Successful Launch of 1st Annual US Digital Interactive Entertainment Conference
Peter Donnell / 4 years ago
The first DNA US Conference was a major success at the beginning of the month. The leading players in the emerging Digital Out-of-Home Entertainment (DOE) industry gathered to learn about new and future entertainment trends and exchange ideas on cutting-edge industry topics during a two-day run at the University of Southern California (USC) Davidson Conference Center.
Kicking off the ground-breaking event was keynote speaker Chris Stapleton ofSimiosys, who stated the first DNA US Conference had “a very elite attendance – where crossroads are coming together like nowhere else”. Cammie Dunaway, US President / Global CMO of Kidzania reflected that “It’s been pretty inspiring. You’re seeing people tackling how we create more immersive engaging experiences for consumers from a lot of different vantage points.”
Moderator of the ‘New Models of Interactivity in Movie Theaters’ session Nick DeMartino stated “I really appreciated the aggregation of great speakers and examples of all the different categories of out-of-home entertainment. Nowhere have I seen this concentration of the leaders of a whole
range of different digital technologies.”
In the ‘Maximizing Social Media in Leisure Facilities’ session, Jamison Selby, a leading interactive game producer said the DNA event was “Fantastic – Why have we never done this before? There are a lot of people with convergent needs and questions that can come together.”
One well-regarded panelist, John Race from TimePlay Entertainment, commented “It’s been really interesting how much overlap there is between my stuff, interaction in social spaces, and the other discussions. It’s interesting to hear how the other perspectives come back to the same space.” Co-panelist Mike Fuchsman of NCM Media Networks, said “I think it’sa great thing. Taking different avenues looking at gaming and arcade and branching into cinema and different components is the right thing to do.”
During the two day conference, a diverse selection of topics were presented by many “leading lights” in the DOE sector – with respected industry veteran Vincent John Vincent of GestureTek commenting that “The quality of the speakers and the diversity of the information was really great.” And during the ‘Riding the Wave of Gesture-Based Experiences’ session, Jason Brush fromPOSSIBLE enthusiastically stated that the event – “focuses on a very specific cross section which is a really vital component of forming the new business and cultural landscape”.
The DNA US Conference also included a chance for audience relaxation and participation, with a short evening reception hosted at Jillian’s Universal Cityvenue (owned by DNA sponsor GameWorks), where attendees enjoyed playing some of the latest arcade games and a special demonstration where guests experienced the new “Live-Crowd” interactive social gaming platform from wallFour, which showcased team collaboration in a first-of-its-kind interactive “public-space” game.
The main goal of the DNA US Conference was to determine if the DOE industry is now primed for a “new-era” foundation which would be geared to support the ever-changing needs and demands of this diverse and emerging market sector.
Conference founder and organizer Kevin Williams of KWP, summed up the event as “The DNA US event will be remembered as the start of something really big, and to keep the momentum growing, we are now working out the details for the next US event. We were also proud to announce the launch of the global DNA Association; more details on its aims and scope will be released, following a very enthusiastic and positive reaction from both our attendees and other industry members.”
The DNA organizers also revealed plans for a London, UK event in Q1 2013, and also the second USA conference scheduled for Q2 2013, as well as the availability of a series of free Podcasts recorded at DNA USA 2012, featuring some fascinating, in-depth interviews with many of the speakers, which will be available via the newly-created DNA Association website http://dna-association.com shortly.